Launched back in 2009, the Maruti Suzuki Ritz is known for its practical drivability, frugal engine and well-packed cabin, but couldn't generate as many sales as some other cars from Maruti Suzuki did. So, to boost-up its sales, Maruti introduced the 2012 Ritz facelift version with some tweaks and new features. Wearing the new headlamps, redesigned bumper, bonnet, signature front smiling grille with embossed ‘Suzuki’ logo, larger fog lamps and sporty rear spoiler, the new Ritz appears to be sportier and more outgoing than its predecessor. The Ritz facelift is available in three new shades: Breeze Blue, Mystique Red and Granite Grey.
The changes go more apparent inside. The new red dual tone interior feels very bright and vibrant. The fit and finish is good. The rear seating configuration and lumbar support are better than before. The new feature list includes an audio system with USB connectivity, multi-information display in instrument panel (with fuel gauge), day & night IRVM and electrically adjustable ORVM. The new Ritz shares engine with Maruti Swift, as it comes powered with the same 1.2-litre K-12 series petrol unit. With MPFI (Multi Point Fuel Injection), this powertrain is tuned for better power & torque outputs, fuel efficiency and lesser emissions. It produces a peak power output of 85.8bhp with 113Nm of torque. Coupled with a five-speed manual transmission, it delivers fuel efficiency of 18.50kmpl, while the automatic petrol variant offers a mileage of 17.16kmpl.
The 1.3-litre, DDIS diesel engine makes a peak power output of 74bhp with 190Nm of torque. This power-unit features CRDI fuel injection system with turbocharger and intercooler combination and DOHC (Double Over Head Camshaft) that contribute to the efficient combustion and fuel efficiency, respectively. This Ritz diesel is claimed to offer a class-leading mileage of 23.20kmpl. The Ritz petrol can accelerate 0-100kmph within 14.71 seconds, while the diesel variant does the same in about 15-16 seconds with a top-speed of 163kmph. The overall handling and driving dynamics are impressive. The controls are easy and prompt. The ride is balanced on smooth, but gets uncomfortable on uneven surfaces. The turning radius is small, but body roll is significant. Braking system is very promising. Maruti beats all its competitors, when it comes to pricing. The new Ritz facelift is priced between Rs. 5.31 lakh – Rs. 6.23 lakh that makes it a worthy investment for the cost-conscious Indian buyers.
Maruti made some vital cosmetic alterations to new Ritz, but the unconventional rear styling and tall body design might repulse some buyers. However, the Ritz facelift looks younger and more outgoing than its previous version. The front fascia received the significant revision such as new headlamps, larger fog lamps and signature front smiling grille with embossed ‘Suzuki’ logo. The bonnet design appears more compact, while the bumper is bigger than before. The side profile remains same, except the new body side moulding.
The entry-level and mid-variants are assembled with 14-inches steel wheels with 165/80 size of tubeless tyres, while the top-end variants get alloy wheels with 185/ 70 R14 size of tyres. The prominent rear wheel arch gives illusion of big tyres. The new rear spoiler looks very sporty, but it isn’t enough to make any significant difference to its rear styling. Now, the Ritz is available in Mystique Red, Superior White, Breeze Blue, Granite Grey, Silky Silver and Bakers Chocolate.
The interior is well-packed, and more up-market than its predecessor. The sporty red dual-tone cabin appeals at very first glance. The fit and finish is good. The seats are comfortable and very supportive. There is good legroom and headroom. The ingress/egress is relatively better than the other hatchbacks. The higher seating position and large windows offer better visibility. However, the broad C-pillar restricts the rear passenger visibility. The rear seat features a 60:40 splits.
The gearshift is easy. The dashboard is simple and large, but the plastic quality is just alright. The paper marked dials, fuel consumption units and trip computer format are troublesome. The top-end variant (ZDi) comes with steering-mounted audio controls and airbags. The audio system with USB connectivity, multi-information display in instrument panel (with fuel gauge), day & night IRVM and electrically adjustable ORVM add more to its comfort and convenience level. The 236-litres boot space is decent for this segment.
Engine and Transmission
The Maruti Ritz derives power from a 1.2-litre K-12 series petrol unit, which features MPFI (Multi Point Fuel Injection), and delivers a peak power output of 85.8bhp with 113Nm of torque. This gasoline engine is tuned for better power & torque outputs, fuel efficiency and lesser emissions. Mated to a five-speed manual gearbox, it offers a decent mileage of 18.50kmpl, while the automatic variant consumes more fuel, and delivers fuel efficiency of 17.16kmpl.
The 1.3-litre, DDIS diesel powertrain produces a peak power output of 74bhp with 190Nm of torque. Boosted with CRDI fuel injection system with turbocharger and intercooler combination and DOHC (Double Over Head Camshaft), this power-unit improves the efficient combustion and fuel efficiency of the car. On fuel efficiency, the Ritz diesel proves to be a very promising vehicle, with 23.20kmpl. The Ritz petrol can achieve 0-100kmph within 14.71 seconds, whereas, the diesel variant accelerates 100kmph from standstill in just about 15-16 seconds with a top speed of 163kmph.
Performance and Handling
In terms of handling and drivability, the new Ritz is a decent performer. The ride is balanced. The front McPherson strut with coil spring and rear torsion beam suspension system offer comfortable and balanced ride, especially at front side. However, the rear passengers deal with bouncy ride on uneven surfaces at speed of 30-50kph. The electric power steering lacks promptness. The controls are excellent. The engine is frugal, peppy and responsive.
Combined with a four-speed automatic transmission, the Ritz offers a pleasing urban driving experience. The automatic version promptly accelerates from standstill, and throttle response is excellent. The power supply is linear. The great ratio is high. The engine gets noisy at high RPMs. However, the VVT technology helps with the refinement level and revv happy performance of the engine. The body roll is well-controlled, and turning radius is decent.
The braking system is promising. The front ventilated disc brakes and rear drum brakes are flawless. The top-end trim is offered with advanced ABS (Antilock braking system) with electronic brakeforce distribution system (EBD) and brake assist. The front McPherson strut with coil spring and rear torsion beam suspension system is robust, and absorbs jerks and bounces so well.MileageIn terms of fuel efficiency, the Ritz facelift is much better than its predecessor. The 1.2-litre, K-12 series petrol engine combined with a five-speed manual transmission offers a decent fuel economy of 18.50kmpl. The MPFI (Multi Point Fuel Injection) technology enhances the fuel efficiency and overall performance of the engine.The automatic version of Ritz takes more fuel, and delivers a mileage of 17.16kmpl. The Ritz diesel sports CRDI fuel injection system with turbocharger and intercooler combination and DOHC (Double Over Head Camshaft), which not only helps deliver a great power, but a class-leading mileage of 23.20kmpl as well.Safety featuresMaruti Suzuki Ritz is one of the safest hatchbacks in its league, as it comes loaded with a plenty of safety measures. However, the top-end variants have more to offer such as advanced ABS (Antilock braking system) with EBD (Electronic brake-force distribution) brake assist and dual SRS airbags. The Intelligent Computerized Anti Theft System (Immobilizer iCATS), central locking, front ELR seat belt with pretensioner, child lock are counted as standard features.VerdictMaruti Ritz is a good urban hatchback, which is fun to drive. The handling and ride quality is excellent. Both petrol and diesel engines are frugal, revv-happy and responsive. Now, the facelifted Ritz has beter interior. The fit and finish is decent. The new cosmetic tweaks are admirable, but the unconventional rear styling could be a deal breaker. The Maruti Ritz is priced between Rs. 4.29 lakh - Rs. 6.24 lakh. With added comfort and convenience, the Ritz automatic (VXi ABS) is obviously a better choice, but it costs more than the well-equipped Ritz ZXi.
Maruti Ritz Vs Honda Brio
The Ritz facelift isn’t an easy pick when it comes to styling and design. The new cosmetic alterations aren’t enough to make an impact, and its unconventional rear styling might turn-off some buyers. It is bigger, taller and longer than the Brio. The Honda Brio looks very sporty and outgoing. The Brio speaks a new styling language that addresses the young buyers.
The new Ritz also comes with optional red dual-tone interior that looks very sporty. The fit and finish is good, and seats are comfortable. The Ritz offers relatively good cabin space. The Brio appears stylish and refreshing from inside as well. The dual tone cabin with various bells and whistles feels more rich compared to the Ritz. The limited cabin space is only the downside else, otherwise, Brio is a better deal. Though, unavailability of the diesel powertrain, is a negative point here, for the people only considering a diesel car.
Both hatchbacks are powered by a 1.2-litre, 4-cylinder, water cooled engine unit, but Brio's engine is relatively more powerful. Even on the fuel efficiency front, the Brio takes a lead over the Ritz, and offers an impressive mileage of 18.4kmpl. However, the Ritz diesel delivers a class-leading fuel economy of 23.20kmpl.
The Ritz with KB series engine performs so well on urban roads. The refinement levels are excellent. The ride is comfort at front, but feels bumpy at rear seats. The Brio does wonder in this department too. The hatchback is very smooth and swift on urban roads, and highways as well. The Brio is easy on pocket, which is priced between Rs. 3.95 lakh (for base variant) – Rs. 5.10 lakh (for top-end variant), while the Ritz costs between Rs 4.29 lakh – Rs. 6.24 lakh.
Pros & Cons
· Comfortable cabin with well-packaging
· Efficient engines
· Practical ride
· Easy handling
· Low cost maintenance
· Unconventional rear styling
· Low speed performance
· Poor material quality